St. Michael’s Cathedral is an architectural monument of local significance and a church of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. It was in St. Michael’s Cathedral that Svyatoslav Richter was baptized.
The cathedral was built in 1856 at the expense of Zhytomyr merchant Mykhailo Khabotin. The total cost of the church was a huge amount – about 37 thousand rubles – it is almost twice the annual budget of Zhytomyr. In 1856 St. Michael’s Cathedral was consecrated.
After the benefactor’s death, he was buried under the altar of the church. During the Soviet years, his remains were barbarically excavated, and their fate remains unknown.
After the October Revolution and until 1927, the church functioned as a temple of the Ukrainian autocephalous Orthodox community. After that, the church building was used for a long time by the Soviet authorities as a warehouse. During the Second World War, the Germans kept the confiscated radios here, then returned the church to the faithful, it remained in operation until 1960.
Then the small domes of the temple were demolished and the bell tower was destroyed, and a two-story building for offices was erected in its place. For a long time there was a regional society “Knowledge”, and later – a puppet theater. In the basement was the warehouse of the store “Sporting Goods”.
On November 21, 1991, the church premises were returned to the religious community, and services began. Since the foundation of the church, two fragments of iconography made in the XIX century have survived on the walls of the cathedral.
In 2017, a monument to Metropolitan Hilarion (Professor Ivan Ogienko) was erected near the cathedral.
St. Michael’s Cathedral in Zhytomyr is one of the architectural highlights of the city. It is planned to make paintings on three hundred meters of the building. The painting of the cathedral began twenty years ago. The cathedral is the only Ukrainian church where the process of restoring ancient Ukrainian paintings continues